The right insurance plans for your healthcare can save you quite a lot of money each year. Some people who sign up for Medicare plans save hundreds and even thousands of dollars every year on their medical expenses. Of course, the wrong plan can cost you and you can end up paying for coverage that you don’t really need.
We would like to tell you a bit about Medicare’s plans and how they can cover you for different medical expenses. Not every plan is going to be a good option for you, so knowing what’s on offer and how they differ can prove invaluable as you try to save some money.
Who is Eligible for Medicare?
Not everyone qualifies for Medicare’s coverage. Some people may apply and end up having their application turned down. In order to be approved for Medicare, you need to know what the minimum requirements are.
These are simple, really. You just have to be a US citizen and be at least 65 years old. Once you meet those requirements, then there should be little reason for Medicare to turn you down for one of their plans. You also buy plans through private insurance companies. They offer some alternatives to basic Medicare as well as some addons for the basic plan.
You can be eligible for Medicare without meeting the age requirement, though. If you have end stage renal disease or you have been diagnosed with a disability of some kind, then you could qualify earlier than age 65.
If you apply too early or at the wrong time, then you may not be approved for Medicare then either. You have to apply at the right time. This is generally around your 65th birthday, but you can also apply during general enrollment. That falls at the beginning of the year and runs throng the end of March, you can apply anytime in there for basic Medicare and anytime during Open Enrollment for many of the other plans that have the Medicare name. Open Enrollment runs from around November to the end of December.
By applying during the right time, you can be guaranteed coverage. If you want to be sure that you are accepted for Medicare, then you should be applying during the right time and ensuring that you meet the minimum requirements.
What Medicare’s Plans Will Cover
While there are lots of different Medicare coverage plans, only basic Medicare is sold through Medicare directly, and that’s the plan we want to focus on here. This plan consists of two different parts which are usually not sold separately. They are Part A and Part B.
Part A covers a lot of inpatient care, such as lab tests, hospital room costs, x-rays, nursing care and more. Part B covers you for outpatient costs, like ambulance care, mental health treatment and a variety of doctor’s services. These two parts work as a unit to deliver some of the best medical coverage in the industry.
These cover most of the common medical expenses you will encounter, but they are not the only option for you. You can add them onto basic Medicare plans for additional coverage. You don’t have to settle for only basic coverage if you need more.
Other plans such as Advantage plans, Part D and Supplement plans provide alternative or additional coverage that can prove useful. These are generally only necessary if you have a lot of additional expenses to pay after Original Medicare does its part. You won’t necessarily need these plans just because you have a serious medical condition. If you do have financial difficulties or a major medical condition you are battling, there may be price reductions and other services you can benefit from that will be available to you.
Using Medicare Coverage
Just because you signed up for Medicare that doesn’t mean it will be accepted everywhere. It is accepted in most medical facilities, but there will be some places that will not accept it. There may also be some expenses the plans cover that won’t actually, get covered in certain circumstances. This refers to times when a treatment or service is not considered medically necessary. So, in certain times, that service may be necessary and in other times it may not be. You’ll have to be careful about just assuming that you are covered all the time for the items listed on your coverage plan.
If you are not sure if you are covered, then you can always ask. You can check with your doctor or your insurance agent to find out if a recommended service or treatment is covered under our plan. It is your right to know for sure if you are covered for something before actually going through with that service. You don’t have to pay for anything out of pocket that you don’t want to, if you simply refuse the service.
Medicare can cover you for getting a second opinion, among other things, so make use of that to find out if something that your doctor recommends is really necessary for you. You may be able to save money by being judicious with your medical care and not paying for anything that you don’t need. On the other hand, you want to be careful about turning down medical treatment that you could actually benefit from. Sometimes, it’s better to just bite the bullet and go through with it, paying for the service, than to ignore the problem and skip the recommended treatment.
Keep in mind that Medicare is not compatible with all medical insurance plans. Some of them cover some of the same expenses, and in those instances, you will need to drop one of your plans in order to qualify for the other one. Medicare plans are not allowed to overlap with other coverage, and Medicare will make you drop one of them if they do. Keep that in mind as you are choosing your plan, and make the choice that fits you well but that doesn’t break Medicare’s rules.